July 30th 2016
There appears to be another Sex Sting operation in Bradenton that should be announced soon.
Over the last few days of July of 2016, a number of arrests have been made in Manatee County of young men who were on sites like POF.com and Meetme.com. The police still use the bait and switch ads on Craigslist casual encounters but seem to be making more arrests where they initiate contact responding to legitimate adult profiles on Meetme.com and Plenty O Fish. Almost all of the men that they arrested were not looking for, or targeting minors. In almost every case, it is the undercover detectives that are targeting gullible and sometimes young men with learning disabilities.
Over the last few years as a Manatee and Sarasota sex sting lawyer, I have seen more and more young men with disabilities get lured into compromising situations.
The police seem to be of the opinion that they can entrap men who had no prior intention of ever hooking up with an underage female by contacting them, tempting them and talking them into traveling to meet a minor. It is particularly sad when men with autism or significant learning disabilities are trapped. If you are a parent of a young adult male with a disability, you must warn your son not to interact with anyone on the Internet that says they are 12, 13 or 14 years old, no matter how tempting it sounds. Men with disabilities simply do not understand the consequences and fall prey to police entrapment. It is the police that are really doing the Internet solicitation, the luring, the seducing and the enticing.
When the police do their public announcement they make it sound like sexual predators are on the Internet targeting young girls. In my experience, it is just the opposite. In almost all of the cases I have seen, the police are the real Internet Sex Predators. The best way to not get arrested is simply not interact with anyone on the Internet that even hints they are a minor. Many times the police will use a subtle hint with a name like “Debbiesue14” or in the ad hint at being in school or hint that “mom is away for the weekend”. Most adult men understand and do not respond. Young men with disabilities simply do not comprehend the seriousness of the situation. If you have a son with a disability, you need to protect him from the police.
The public announcement will probably be made Monday.